BioPharm: How have your processes and results changed since using a fermentor?
Stevens: Using the fermentor has
allowed my research to advance in
directions previously thought
unimaginable prior to obtaining
the fermentor. Although it is possible
to grow hundreds of liters of
cells without a fermentor (albeit an
extremely tedious and time consuming
proposition), we find that
the reproducibility and dynamic
monitoring of variables such as dissolved
oxygen, pH, temperature,
and agitation speed allow us to predictably
and reproducibly generate
useful biomass for our experiments.
BioPharm: Is the fermentor integrated with any other technology in the laboratory/ facility?
Stevens: Our facility has been designed for maximum flexibility and ease of use. In addition to the fermentor, there is a process steam generator (Electro Steam Generator). We use a CEPA Z-60 continuous-flow centrifuge for biomass harvesting. This centrifuge allows us to harvest 400 liters of culture volume in under an hour. We also have installed a 12-liter, smallscale fermentor (NBS) that can be connected through an in situ sterilizable connector (custom part, NBS) to feed the large fermentor.
To process the material obtained
from the fermentor, we have
the option of high-pressu